Most people feel shy, nervous, or uncomfortable in certain social situations or settings. However, for individuals managing social anxiety disorder, also called social phobia, everyday social interactions cause levels of fear and embarrassment that are so challenging and persistent that it interferes with their ability to function in everyday life.
At Harmony Hills, our anxiety treatment program utilizes a combination of evidence-based and holistic treatment modalities to help clients coping with social anxiety lead a healthy and productive life. Call 855.494.0357 or contact our team online today to get tips for social anxiety management and learn more about the benefits of our anxiety treatment in Florida.
Recognizing the Signs of Social Anxiety Disorder
Social anxiety disorder’s numerous signs and symptoms fall into emotional, physical, and behavioral categories.
Emotional signs of social anxiety disorder include:
- Persistent feelings of awkwardness, embarrassment, or self-consciousness around others
- The constant fear that others are judging you
- Extreme worry that you will embarrass or humiliate yourself in front of others
- Finding it difficult or scary to be with others, especially people you do not know
Fearing that others will notice your anxiety is also a common emotional sign of the condition.
Physical signs of social anxiety disorder include:
- Muscle tension or rigid body posture
- Feeling nauseous or sick to your stomach
- Feeling like your mind has gone blank
- Blushing, sweating, or trembling
- Feeling dizzy, lightheaded, or unable to cannot catch your breath
A rapid heart rate is a common physical sign that can be complicated to manage, as it can also be a sign of other medical conditions. If you are experiencing persistent and unexpected physical symptoms, it is essential to seek professional help to determine the cause.
Behavioral signs of social anxiety disorder include:
- Avoiding places where there are other people or where you will be the center of attention
- Expecting the worst possible outcomes from social situations
- Avoiding doing things or speaking to people out of embarrassment
- Feeling highly anxious in anticipation of an activity or event
- Spending an excessive amount of time analyzing and critiquing how you acted in a social situation
The signs and symptoms of social anxiety disorder can change over time and may intensify during periods of significant change or increased stress.
5 Tips for Managing Social Anxiety
Social anxiety disorder does not have to control your life by preventing you from trying new things, meeting new people, or preventing you from reaching your full potential. Consider the following five tips for managing social anxiety:
- Challenge your negative thinking – Negative thoughts fuel social anxiety and cause you to misread significantly or misinterpret people and situations. Ask yourself how realistic your thinking is and challenge negative thoughts with positive ones.
- Learn to control your breathing – Anxiety can cause you to feel shortness of breath, making you feel more anxious. Take time to connect with your breath and slow it down. Taking just a few slow, deep breaths can significantly impact your feelings.
- Practice and prepare – Ask the people you are comfortable with to role-play specific scenarios that make you anxious or try going someplace new with them. Use deep breathing and relaxation techniques to calm yourself before leaving the house.
- Take the focus off yourself – Most people cannot tell how anxious you are. Shift your attention to what is happening around you instead of what is happening in your head. Pay attention to observing your surroundings, being a good listener, and staying present.
- Practice relaxation techniques – Social anxiety can include uncomfortable or overwhelming physical symptoms. Relaxation techniques can help calm physical reactions so you can focus on managing worry, fear, and anxiety.
These are just a handful of strategies for managing social anxiety you will learn through our anxiety treatment in Florida.
Contact Harmony Hills to Get More Tips for Social Anxiety Management
Most people feel anxious in social situations from time to time. However, if your level of anxiety prevents you from interacting with others or causes you to avoid everyday social problems, you may have a social anxiety disorder. Call 855.494.0357 or contact Harmony Hills online to learn more about coping with social anxiety through formal treatment.